The cost per install directly attributed to advertising for Android apps is up 59 percent since this time last year, just a little higher than iOS, though Apple's platform has been significantly less expensive in the last two months, according to Fiksu. The mobile marketing company's latest indexes look not only at the cost per install (CPI) but also what it calls the cost per loyal user (CPLU), or people who open an app three times or more based on advertising efforts.
- The CPI increased to $2.13 on iOS, a rise of 39 percent since March and 54 percent since April of last year. Android CPI increased to $2.08, a rise of only 20 percent month-over-month.
- The Cost Per Launch Index (CPL), which tracks the cost to drive continued mobile app engagement, increased to $0.41 on iOS, up 34 percent month-over-month and 75 percent year-over-year. Android CPL increased to $0.34, a 44 percent rise over last month and a much higher 169 percent increase year-over-year.
- While April's overall iOS CPLU of $2.74 represents an 11 percent decrease since last month, it's a significant 80 percent increase over 2014.
- On the volume side, the Fiksu App Store Competitive Index, which tracks the average aggregate daily download volume of the top 200 free iOS apps, held steady at 8.1M, but continued its year-over-year growth, coming in at 52 percent over 2014. Android data wasn't provided.
"Increased attention to mobile and willingness to spend to reach the 'right' app users is evident, and with that, costs have been rising. Higher-value sources, such as Facebook and video ads, cost more on a per-install basis but lead to higher-quality results," the report said. "In addition, an increased focus on retargeting--to retain users and convert them to loyal users--allows advertisers to obtain higher loyalty rates."
No doubt mobile marketers are getting more sophisticated, but for recent attendees of Google I/O in San Francisco the cost per launch for Android apps might be a bit disquieting. Though Android is often praised for its vast reach across a wide range of devices, there's also a lot of competition, which may make it more expensive for some apps and mobile games to stand out. It'll be interesting to see if Amazon's recently launched Android app install ad network offering, along with Microsoft's willingness to help developers port over Android as well as iOS apps to Windows phones, will have any long-term impact here.
- get the report here
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